About Ruan Thai
At this strip-mall Thai joint, you can pretty much close your eyes and point at the vast menu and there’s a good chance you’ll wind up with something wondrous. Frying is at a level far above other Thai restaurants (and other restaurants in general). The famed yum watercress salad—with its crispy bits of greens, shrimp, squid, cashew, and shallot tossed with spicy lime juice—tastes like a fritto misto gone Southeast Asian. Yum pla korb ramps up shards of crunchy fish with scallions, lemongrass, and lime. And boneless duck with a shower of chilies and basil is beautifully caramelized. You can also rely on this 18-year-old family-run kitchen for takeout standards: It makes a mean pad Thai, Panang curry, and chicken satay.
Don’t miss: Chive dumplings; larb (minced-chicken salad); grilled pork with spicy sauce; fried flounder with chili and basil; mango with sticky rice.